Interfaith Opportunities



ION is

a lay-led interfaith network based

in Hampshire County, MA

seeking to strengthen bonds of

mutual respect and

understanding. We desire to

learn from each others' faith

traditions, rejoice in the many

things we have in common, and

appreciate our differences. We

respond as inspired out of our

shared concern for peace,

justice, and the earth.


ION, founded in 2005, celebrated its 10th anniversary

with 16 participating faith communities:  

Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Unitarian, Quaker

Hampshire Mosque, Hadley

Naz Mohamed

South Congregational Church, Amherst 

Lee Bridegam

First Congregational Church, Amherst

Katie Tolles - Co-Convener

Dorothy Cresswell - ION Webmaster

                    North Hadley Congregational Church,

Pastor Gordon                        

Goodwin Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church, Amherst
Jacqueline Wallace

Grace Episcopal Church, Amherst 
Eve Webster

Hope Community Church, Amherst

Scottie Faerber

                       Immanuel Lutheran Church, Amherst
Melba Larson
Cheryl Smith

Jewish Community of Amherst
Frieda Howards
Elaine Walsh

Marian Center, Holyoke
Chris Clark

Mount Toby Friends Meeting, Leverett
Peter Blood - Co-Convener
Frank Gatti

Unitarian Universalist Society of Amherst
Mary Beth Seminario

Wesley United Methodist Church, Hadley
Doris Newton


Barbara Jenkins
Joan Lindeman, Founder
Bonny Vaught

Hindu saying:

The grace of God is coming down upon us all the time,

like a gentle rain,

but we forget to cup our hands.


Check this calendar for
Jewish-Christian-Muslim-Unitarian events


Rhode Island Church Taking Unusual Step
to Illuminate Its Slavery Role
                                                                        Photo: Charlie Mahoney/NY Times

Providence, R.I. -  Bishop W. Nicholas Knisely, who became Episcopal bishop of Rhode Island in 2012, is taking steps to publicly acknowledge its past.  They include the establishment of a museum focused on the trans-Atlantic slave trade, slavery and the North's complicity, as part of a new center for racial reconciliation and healing.

          "I want to tell the story," Bishop Knisely said, "of how the Episcopal Church and religious voices participated in supporting the institution of slavery and how they worked to abolish it.  It's a mixed bag."

          The museum and reconciliation center are to be housed at the 200-year-old stone Cathedral of St. John, the seat of the Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island.  Because of dwindling membership, the majestic but deteriorating cathedral was closed in 2012.

          The idea for the museum and reconciliation center grew out of community discussions over what to do with the shuttered cathedral; it has gained new urgency in recent months as numerous cities have erupted in racial unrest.

More . . .